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Plywood 101: What is Plywood and What Are Its Benefits - Part 2

Tuesday, August 8, 2017 4:51 PM


Hi there and welcome back to part two of our short blog series. In our last post, we began venturing into the realm of plywood, what it is, how it is made, and introduced some of the benefits of plywood cabinet boxes. You may want to read part one before reading further. In today’s post, we will continue exploring some of the advantages of plywood construction in cabinets. All of our cabinets feature a plywood cabinet box, as well as base cabinets that feature plywood drawers and bottoms, so we thought it would be beneficial to explain the ins-and-outs of plywood to inform our customers and help eliminate some of the confusion on why it is a better material for cabinetry, while also teaching our customers a little more about the components of their cabinets. Please read on to learn more.

A Quick Refresher

In part one of our plywood blog series, we explained that plywood is a sheet material made of three or more thin layers of wood or plies of wood veneer; each sheet is usually thinner than ⅛ inch and bonded together with an adhesive to create flat panels for the interior cabinet box. You’ll find all of our cabinet boxes feature a 7-12 thick ply. These thin layers of maple or birch veneer are actually part of the plywood, as each veneer or ply is glued with its grain at right angles to adjacent layers creating strength and durability. This process of alternating the wood grain that creates a stable panel material is called cross-graining and has many key advantages as a sturdy cabinet material. One of the benefits that we mentioned in part one relates to the hinges and drawer slides; because plywood is incredibly strong, drawer slides remain attached securely to the inner hardwood plywood material, thus creating smooth  drawer movements. Also, because plywood is constructed to be a durable material, its use in cabinet boxes improves the quality of the cabinet, yet there are many more benefits associated with plywood cabinet box construction listed below.


Cost Effective

While plywood is used in a variety of cabinets, it is typically featured in higher-end cabinets. This does not necessarily mean it always makes a cabinet more expensive than those that utilize other materials; in fact, it is a more affordable option in the long run. Plywood is not made of wood chips like some other composite wood materials used in cabinet construction. Rather, it is made of wood sheets that are compressed together between front and back maple, birch, or even cherry wood veneer layers, and often finished in a light clear coat. Because this wood is much more durable than other wood composites, not only will you get a quality cabinet, but you will also get a sturdy cabinet box that can withstand the tests of time. So even if you pay a little more money up front, the investment will be well worth every penny in the long run.

Easy To Assemble

The sturdiness that plywood offers means that cabinet boxes are easy to assemble. Plywood is designed to hold nails, screws, and mechanical fasteners securely, allowing cabinet hardware to be attached with ease. Additionally, plywood is less likely to split when securing screws and cabinet hardware in place. This adds an extra level of quality to cabinets with plywood cabinet boxes and drawers while also making it easy for both DIYers and professional contractors to assemble these cabinets without worrying about harming the plywood.

Natural Wood Appearance

For those who love the beauty of natural wood, plywood offers the appearance and feel of natural wood, as the wood’s natural patterns including knots, wood grain, and mineral streaking is clearly visible.  

Strength and Durability

The cross-graining construction of the individual wood veneers or plies that are placed together with adhesive and then compressed create a structurally sound panel that can be used in a variety of ways. Plywood is incredibly versatile and is frequently used in the construction of cabinet boxes for just this reason; the sturdy sheets of plywood create strong cabinet box bottoms, tops, sides, backs, shelving, and also provides a solid base in cabinet drawers. Additionally, plywood is designed to last. Unlike particleboard that is used in lower-quality cabinet construction, plywood will not dent, break apart, or scratch as easily. Plywood is also a far better material where areas of potential water leakage or spillage is a possibility. Unlike particle board that absorbs water and expands before turning to dust, plywood will stand up far better to leaks and spills.

This concludes a short blog series that explored plywood and its uses in cabinet construction. Plywood is an excellent panel material that provides durability, strength, and quality for cabinet boxes and drawers. We hope you have found this information helpful. At WoodCabinets4Less, our goal is to provide you with top-quality cabinets for your kitchen and bathroom, while also offering tips and advice relating to all things cabinets. Please check back next time to learn more about our cabinets. Also, be sure to check out our superior collection of cabinets for your next kitchen or remodel project. Thanks for reading our blog and we will see you next time!

Posted in Wood Cabinets